City’s Public Works Director announces retirement

Martha Graham, Director of Public Works for the City of St. Augustine, has announced to local Historic City News reporters that she will retire from her position as Public Works Director for the City effective March 30, 2018.

The City Manager has accepted Graham’s resignation, however, there was no immediate announcement who will replace the 10-year employee in April. Administrative Assistant to the City Manager, Lucy Fountain, said that there is a process to replace a department head that could involve internal posting of the job as well as a hunt at other locations around the state.

We asked at the City Manager’s office if Graham had indicated her plans for retirement, and no one knew. We left word with Graham’s secretary.

Graham accepted the position of Public Works Director and began her employment on February 25, 2008. She moved to St Augustine from the City of Melbourne, Florida where she was the Assistant City Engineer.

“Martha has been a tremendous asset to Team St. Augustine,” said John Regan, St. Augustine’s City Manager. “Her time here is marked by some of the largest public works projects in many years, ones that will serve our city for many, many years to come.”

Projects completed during her tenure as Public Works Director include the Riberia St. Rehabilitation project, the Downtown Improvement District project which included Charlotte, Spanish and Hypolita Sts., the Avenida Menendez Seawall project, the Davis Shores Tide Check Valve project, and the replacement of aging water systems throughout the city to eliminate the problem of red water.

Graham also oversaw the expansion of the city’s recycling program, increased sidewalk construction and street paving, and managed the response by Public Works to Hurricanes Matthew and Irma. She has also been instrumental in long range planning projects including the creation of the city’s Stormwater Master Plan and in the development of the city’s Five Year Capital Improvement Plan.

“The city has been the beneficiary of Martha’s wide ranging and extensive experience she brought with her when she joined city staff,” said Regan. “Her ability to manage the many facets of the Public Works Department, which encompasses nearly one-third of the city’s entire work force, and to do so with a solid commitment to deliver services to those who depended on them, made Martha a very valuable employee and she will be missed.”

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